Newark, Del. — After wrapping up their 23-9-0 regular season with a 5-3 win over Maryland (8-13-1, 1-10-0 MACH) on Saturday (Feb. 9), the University of Delaware Division 2 men’s hockey team (8-4-0 MACH) has momentum and home ice on their side for Friday’s (Feb. 15) Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Hockey Conference South Division semifinal matchup against the Terrapins.
Game time at Fred Rust Arena is 4:30 p.m.; radio coverage will be available at Delaware Hockey Night Radio.
The Blue Hens exit arguably the strongest regular season in the history of the Division 2 program, with their 23 wins the most ever in a single season since the team’s inception in 2011. Of their nine losses, five came to teams who earned automatic berths to the American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA) National Tournament — UMass-Amherst, Penn State and Florida Gulf Coast.
In their Oct. 26 meeting with the Terrapins at the Gardens Ice House in Laurel, Md., Delaware dominated every aspect of a 6-0 shutout. Chris Demas saved all 42 shots he faced and Shane Moran led the Hens with two goals and an assist. The Hens completed the regular season sweep of Maryland with a 5-3 score at home on Saturday (Feb. 9) in which Alec Rankin and Ryan Morse doubled up. Maryland goalie Matt Derry was valiant in defeat, saving 49 of 54 shots.
The 2017-18 season saw Delaware and Maryland split their regular-season series before the Terps handed Delaware a 3-0 loss for an early exit from last year’s MACH playoffs.
Players to Watch: Seven Delaware skaters have averaged over a point a game, with Ryan Morse (27-13–40) leading the offensive productivity and accounting for four game-winning goals on the season. Jeremy DeWit (20-27—47) and Steve Bryson (12-28—40) led the team in assists and each had three game-winning tallies. Devin LeBlanc (24-14—38) proved a lethal force at the face-off circle in his first season with the Blue Hens, defenceman Andrew Marciniak (5-14—19) was key in Delaware’s transition game and power play alike, and Stephen Odgers amassed an 11-3-0 record between the pipes with a 2.80 GAA and a .910 save percentage. Delaware native Chris Bouchard led the Terrapins with 22 goals and 16 assists, supported amply by Evan Yamaguchi (9-13—22) and two-way defenceman Clark LeDane (8-13—21).
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